The Gazette is a little smaller this week. We are working on some changes for 2017 as we enter our 28th year. Not only is the Gazette entering its 28th year, the publisher is also 27-years older.

The new year begs some historical reflection. The changes, at every newspaper level, have been extraordinary. Starting out with 3 Apple Mac Plus machines which could print-out a justified column of text on ordinary paper, then to be trimmed to fit on layout sheets, we left the hot wax and X-acto knives behind and advanced into the digital age. What was laboriously crafted and delivered by hand has evolved to screen composition and electronic transfer. No more "boards" to transport to the press room. No more need to develop film.

The Gazette survived the great Northridge earthquake of 1994. It devastated Fillmore, as well as much of Southern California, and drove the paper out of its original office at 400 Central Avenue, the old Masonic Temple.

Confusion reigned for the next five or six years. We worked out of a half-dozen places at first; our editor's residence, and 3 other homes, for 3 months. Then the city generously provided trailers and other work places. We were in the trailers for several years because so much office space was destroyed by the quake. The Gazette office later moved 3 times due to quake disruption. We have been at our current location for more than 10 years.

Very many challenges were met successfully by the Gazette.

The town has changed dramatically since the Gazette appeared. Most of Fillmore was pretty well camouflaged by groves of orange trees, so much so that traffic on Highway 126 could barely notice the town. Now, in every direction, homes and businesses have sprung-up and the groves are mostly gone. City development has been dramatic during the past 27 years, but it has been a struggle.

Today the Gazette has the best equipment that science has provided for newspaper publication. Compared to those days of film and hot wax, the transition has been extraordinary. I don't miss those days.

One important part of the newspaper is the Gazette online. I do regret it has not been utilized more by our schools. Special attention was paid to the design of our website in providing a page for each and every school and each classroom. There have been few takers of those free opportunities.

For all of our readers and viewers I wish a Happy New Year!

Pray for the success of our new President-elect!